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Posted: March 26, 2009

Carl Zeiss Launches AURIGA, A New, Highly Flexible CrossBeam Workstation

(Nanowerk News) Carl Zeiss SMT has introduced its newly developed AURIGA™ CrossBeam® (FIB-SEM) work-station. As one of the pioneers in developing this class of instruments, and with more than 8 years of FIB-SEM experience, the company incorporated a huge number of innovations in the new AURIGA.
Dr. Thomas Albrecht, Director Product Management, said: “Useful information about a sample goes far beyond just high resolution surface images. We focused on two major tasks during the development of this powerful new instrument: First, to make possible the analysis of a never-before-seen variety of samples, and second, to enable customers to obtain the maximum information possible from each sample. AURIGA – delivering much more than just an image – is the result of this quest.”
Cross section of an iron rich fly ash sample from Western Australia, taken with material sensitive EsB detector
Cross section of an iron rich fly ash sample from Western Australia, taken with material sensitive EsB detector. The meticulous preparation with the high resolution FIB enables a profound microstructural and chemical investigation based on the combination of unique imaging and advanced analytics. Fly ash is used for the fabrication of geopolymer concrete. (Courtesy of Prof. Arie Van Riessen, Curtin University of Technology, Australia)
New chamber design and unique charge compensation system for advanced analytics
Chemical analysis, crystallographic information, the complete morphology, electrical information … the number and complexity of tasks required to obtain an extensive sample characterization on the nanometer scale is unlimited, as is the number and variety of samples. Therefore, flexibility is a must. In order to meet this requirement, AURIGA has a completely redesigned vacuum chamber, which now includes a total of 15 ports for different detectors.
Additionally, an unrivaled charge compensation system enables the local application of an inert gas flush. In this way, electrostatic charging of non-conductive samples is neutralized and detection of secondary electrons (SE) as well as backscattered electrons (BSE) becomes feasible. Also EDS, EBSD, SIMS and many more analytical methods benefit from this technology, supporting numerous applications in materials analysis, life sciences and semiconductor technology.
Precise processing of samples by unique imaging
The very heart of the AURIGA CrossBeam® workstation is the proven GEMINI® FE-SEM column. Its special in-lens EsB detector offers images with excellent material contrast. Additionally, the design of the GEMINI column enables the analysis of magnetic samples. A feature unique to CrossBeam workstations from Carl Zeiss is simultaneous milling and high- resolution SEM imaging. To ensure optimal customer support, AURIGA incorporates a new high-resolution FIB with a top level resolution of 2.5 nm and better. Advanced gas processing technology for ion and e-beam assisted etching and deposition completes the unequalled sample processing capabilities of this new instrument.
Future-Assured upgrade path
Flexible adaptation to changing or growing demands is a requirement that is perfectly supported by AURIGA. Starting with a high- performance FE-SEM platform the system can be upgraded according to budgetary requirements or analytical needs to become a fully equipped CrossBeam workstation, including FIB column, gas injection system, charge compensation and an extensive variety of detectors. The AURIGA initially can be configured to meet today’s requirements while, at the same time, allow for upgradeability to meet future needs with leading-edge performance.
Source: Carl Zeiss (press release)